Mansion of Count Sergei Witte Topic: Witte, Sergei
The modest white and blue mansion at No. 5 Kamennoostrovsky Pl., in St. Petersburg was the former home of Count Sergei Witte. He was one of the most important political figures of Tsarist Russia.
He served under the last two emperors of Russia. He was also the author of the October Manifesto of 1905, a precursor to Russia's first constitution and Chairman of the Council of Ministers (Prime Minister) of the Russian Empire.
Witte lived in his St. Petersburg mansion until his death in 1915.
One of the leading Russian fashion designers, Valentin Yudashkin, has tried his hand at haute cuisine. He’s created an exquisite signature dessert served at the legendary Parisian Cafe de la Paix.
The designer’s “Imperial Gift”, inspired by Carl Fabergé creations, has already been described as a treat to make anyone’s mouth water.
A meringue coated with chocolate, it has savory lemon flavor and a light vanilla cream spiced up with pieces of fresh blueberry and blackberry.
On top of the complex culinary installation, there’s a sweet waffle roll hiding a sugar-coated raspberry with golden tears.
The established Russian designer, whose creations have been exhibited at the Louvre Museum of Fashion and the Metropolitan Museum in New York, was quoted as saying that the challenge was to find such ingredients that would reveal all the nuances of traditional Russian cuisine.
“Desserts are my guilty-food pleasure. That’s why I was especially pleased to make my modest contribution to French culinary art,” Yudashkin told Itar-Tass news agency.
Winter Sleigh Rides at Tsarskoe Selo Topic: Tsarskoye Selo
Visitors to Tsarskoe Selo can enjoy a winter sleigh ride through the Alexander Park. Enjoy the palaces, the park and its pavilions in a two-horse, open four-seat carriage. Weather permitting of course.
A La Vieille Russie will Exhibit Items by Faberge at the TEFAF Maastricht 2011 Topic: Faberge
A La Vieille Russie, New York
A La Vieille Russie, the New York art and antiques gallery that counts among the world’s leaders in antique jewellery and Russian works of art, will exhibit exquisite items by Fabergé, as well as a very rare English necklace, at the TEFAF Maastricht 2011, The European Fine Art Fair that opens on March 18.
Among the highlights are two elegant enamel Fabergé frames, as well as a French 18th century lacquer box, and a Victorian garnet and diamond necklace and earrings. Other highlights include a great collection of Russian cloisonné enamel, featuring significant commemorative pieces.
"We always bring top representative examples of what we sell in the gallery in New York, with a focus on European antique jewelry, snuff boxes and objets de vertu, and of course Fabergé," said Mark Schaffer, a partner in A La Vieille Russie (ALVR).
"The Victorian garnet and diamond necklace and earrings have a rich earthy wine color that you want to see in a Victorian garnet suite,’’ said Mr. Schaffer. ``It is increasingly difficult to find such exquisite antique jewelry, and this is reflected in the six-figure price of this striking suite."
ALVR’s stand is completely re-designed and updated, meant to be a jewel-like microcosm of its New York space. In fact, this year is its 17th exhibiting at TEFAF, making it one of the longest-exhibiting US dealers at the fair.
"We participate in TEFAF because it continues to be the fair with the greatest depth and breadth of artworks," said Mr. Schaffer. "From around the world, polymaths with a passion for art, and for collecting, arrive to visit TEFAF’s critical mass of offerings in any number of fields, from Old Master pictures, to Modern art, to Modern design, to Works on Paper, to Antiquities, to Antiques."
In the 160 years since its founding, ALVR has bought and sold countless Fabergé pieces, including many Imperial Easter Eggs. ALVR was key in creating some of the leading Fabergé collections, including the Forbes Magazine Collection, now partially owned by Victor Vekselberg. Other clients included Grand Duchesses Ksenia and Olga, sisters of Nicholas II, and the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, and King Farouk. Works from the gallery are loaned to museums around the world and exhibited regularly.
Chekhov Monument Unveiled Near Moscow Topic: Chekhov
A new monument of Russian writer and playright, Anton Chekhov has been unveiled in the town of Istra, near Moscow.
The monument was erected to mark the 150th anniversary of the writer’s birth, which took place last year. The writer’s family lived in Voskresensk (the former name of Istra) for almost 2 years. In the nearby Chikinskaya hospital, Chekhov underwent practical training before becoming a doctor at the same hospital. In the neighboring Babkino Village, the Chekhovs rented a summer cottage for three summers.
The architect Vladimir Syagin and the artist Vladimir Surovtsev were chosen to become to create the monument.
The monument sits in a square on the campus of the local teachers’ training college.
Royal Superyachts: How Kings and Queens Sail the Sea Topic: Yachts
The following is an excerpt from an article published by CNN;
Before luxury yachting was the preserve of Russian tycoons and Silicon Valley moguls, it was only the world's wealthiest royals who built palaces on the sea.
There have been and continue to be a fleet of imperial yachts used to transport royals, from Russian czars to princes of Monaco, in the opulent fashion to which they are accustomed.
If you thought that Abramovich and his fellow billionaires were the first of their countrymen to build ultra-ostentatious pleasure boats, then think again.
The Russian imperial yacht "Shtandart,"built according to the specifications of Emperor Alexander III and his son Nicholas, was the largest imperial yacht on the oceans during the late 19th and early 20th century.
Completed in 1895, the opulent vessel was 401 feet long -- about the length of a soccer pitch -- colossal even by today's immodest standards.
Indeed, "Shtandart" was a veritable floating palace, adorned with mahogany-paneled drawing rooms, formal salons with polished floors, brass fittings, crystal chandeliers and velvet drapes.
The czar's private study was furnished in dark leather and elegant wooden furniture, while the czarina's drawing room and boudoir were bedecked in her favorite English chintz. The imperial yacht even had its own chapel for the private use of the family.
However, Russia's largest royal yacht was also her last. After the revolution in 1917, the ship was stripped of all its elegance, renamed "Vosemnadtsate Martza" and refitted as a drab, gray minelayer for service in the Soviet Navy. The boat was scrapped at Tallinn in Estonia in 1963.
Imperial Yacht Shtandart, 1832 Now Playing: Andrei Stackenschneider (1802-1865) Topic: Yachts
The Russian Imperial family enjoying a summer cruise onboard the Imperial yacht, Shtandart.
The painting portrays Tsar Nicholas I (reigned 1825-55), his German-born wife the Empress Alexandra Feodorovna and at least some - if not all - of their seven children, Alexander (the future Tsar Alexander II, reigned 1855-81), Nicholas, Michael, Constantine, Maria, Olga and Alexandra. The vessel depicted is presumably the Shtandart, the second imperial yacht of this name but about which very little is known.
This charming watercolour by Andrei Stackenschneider sold at Christie's (London) for £8,963 ($16,616) in 2004.